NCA Calls For FDA Action, Challenges Misinformation In Debate Over Proposed Food Additive Bans


Washington — The NCA is taking a stand against a rash of pending state-level proposals aimed at banning several FDA-approved food additives. The association reports that while there has been widespread media attention given to this topic, there has been no accountability and little to no fact-checking happening among legislators, non-governmental organizations, nonprofit advocacy groups, activists, and members of the media. As a result, support for these proposed bans has been built on falsehoods that are all too easy to accept at face value, according to NCA.

“Some states are proposing to dismantle our well-developed national food safety system in an emotionally-driven campaign that lacks scientific backing,” says John Downs, NCA president and CEO. “FDA needs to assert its authority as the rightful national regulatory decision maker and leader in food safety. It’s time to stop pretending that consumer magazine publishers and state legislators have the scientific expertise and qualifications to make these very important determinations.”

Following California’s adoption of a food additive ban in the fall of 2023, Illinois, New York, and Pennsylvania are among a handful of states currently considering copycat proposals. Indiana, Maryland, South Dakota, Washington, and West Virginia have rejected similar bills, because the proposals lack scientific basis. Kentucky legislators recently passed a resolution acknowledging that food safety decisions should be based in fact and driven by those with regulatory expertise.

NCA points out that careless rhetoric deployed in this debate would lead consumers to believe the food additives in question are harmful and there is a systematic failure on behalf of the U.S. food safety system. This ignores the fact that the FDA is taking action to modernize its review process to meet the growing demands of the agency.

“Usurping FDA’s authority does nothing but create a state-by-state patchwork of inconsistent state requirements that increase food costs, create confusion around food safety, and erode consumer confidence in our food supply,” says Downs. “FDA and regulatory bodies around the world have deemed our products safe. We are in firm agreement that science-based evaluation of food additives is needed — and we follow and will continue to follow regulatory guidance from the authorities in this space, because consumer safety is our chief responsibility and priority.”

For more resources, visit, and